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contraception tips

Girl Talk: How Do I Choose The Right Contraception?

It’s time for THAT talk; contraception. Choosing the right form of contraception can be incredibly daunting, there are so many different options, and pros and cons for each form. Some might give you mood swings, make your breasts tender or even make you gain weight. It can be scary being face with the options and deciding what will work for you, but don’t worry. With a little positive thinking and the right facts, you’ll be able to choose the form which suits you best.

1)Male condom

Male condoms are 98% effective at preventing pregnancy. It is a small latex ‘glove’ which slides over the penis and stops sperm from entering your uterus.


  •         They are effective in protecting you against sexually transmitted infections (STIs)
  •         As long as they don’t break they are effective in stopping pregnancy
  •         They only need to be used at the time of sexual intercourse
  •         No medical side effects


  •         If the wrong size is used they can slip or break
  •         Some people are allergic to latex

2) Female condom

The female condom is a thin polyurethane which lines the vagina and acts as a barrier against sperm. It is 95% effective.


  •         It can protect both partners from STIs
  •         They do not need advance preparation
  •         No medical side-effects.


  •         It may get pushed into the vagina
  •         They may split off or tear if not used correctly

3) Contraceptive injection

This is the first long acting method we will talk about. It is reversible and you don’t have to take it daily, which suite many people. It is 99% effective. It involves a doctor injecting progestogen into your body, and the effect lasts up to 13 weeks.


  •         It can be used it you are breastfeeding
  •         It does not interrupt sex
  •         You don’t need to worry about remembering to take a pill each day
  •         It could reduce painful periods
  •         It can give some protection against womb cancer


  •         Once injected it cannot be removed, meaning that if you suffer side effect, you just have to ride it out.
  •         It can cause weight gain
  •         Periods and fertility will take time to return to normal after taking

4) Contraceptive implant

The contraceptive implant is a small rod filled with progestogen which is inserted into the arm and offers a slow release to prevent pregnancy for up to 3 years. It is 99% effective.


  •         The implant lasts for three years, but you can remove it at any time
  •         You can forget about your contraception once inserted
  •         Once the implant is removed, your fertility will return to normal


  •         You can feel it with your fingers in your arm, though it can’t be seen, and it is put in using a local anaesthetic
  •         It may increase chances of getting acne.

5) Intrauterine device (IUD)

The intrauterine device is a small plastic and copper device also known as a coil more commonly. It is inserted into the uterus by a doctor or nurse. It is over 99% effective and can last for 5-10 years.


  •         It does not contain any hormones
  •         You don’t have to think about your contraception once it has been inserted
  •         When it is removed, your fertility will return to normal.


  •         It could make periods heavier
  •         It can be uncomfortable to insert
  •         There is a small chance of getting an infection when fist inserted

6) Contraceptive vaginal ring

A small plastic ring is worn by women in the vagina each month. It stops ovulation to prevent pregnancy. It is over 99% effective and is used for 3 weeks out of 4 every month. Of course the week without will be where your natural period occurs.


  •         You don’t need to remember to take a pill every day
  •         It can make your periods come regularly and bleeding less heavy


  •         It is not suitable for smokers over 35
  •         It is not suitable for women who are heavily overweight
  •         You will need to insert and remove it yourself, you need to be comfortable with doing that
  •         There are some low risk side effects present: blood clots, breast and cervical cancer.
  •         It can cause less severe and temporary side effects such as headaches, nausea, mood changes and breast tenderness.

7) Combined pill

The combined pill is an oral contraceptive with contains a mixture of progestogen and estrogen. It is over 99% effective if used correctly.


  •         Once you stop taking the pill, your fertility will go back to normal immediately
  •         It can help make your periods more regular and lighter
  •         Some women don’t have periods at all


  •         It is not suitable for very overweight women
  •         Smokers over 35-years-old cannot use this form of contraception
  •         There is a risk of forgetting to take pills- which will reduce its effectiveness
  •         Vomiting or severe diarrhoea can make it less effective
  •         Low risk of serious side-effects such as blood clots, breast and cervical cancer
  •         It can cause temporary side-effects such as headaches, nausea, mood changes and breast tenderness.

8) Progestogen-only pill

Progestogen is one of the main three hormones the support pregnancy. It thickens the mucus in the cervix which stops the sperm from reaching the eggs. The pill is over 99% effective if used correctly.


  •         It can make periods lighter and more regular
  •         It can stop periods altogether
  •         It can be used by women who smoke and are over 35-years-old.


  •         It must be taken at the same time each day, because if taken 3-12 hours later than normal, the effects can be reduced and cause pregnancy
  •         Missing pills, vomiting or severe diarrhoea can make it less effective.
  •         It can cause temporary side-effects such as headaches, nausea, mood changes and breast tenderness.

No matter which contraceptive option you are thinking of choosing, make sure you speak to your family and friends for advice. Also visit your doctor and get their help in deciding your options. If you have an existing chronic illness or condition, this could affect the contraceptive technique which you are able to take. Don’t rush into the decision, and remember these are all reversible.

*This post is contributed to Spicy Scribbler Blog


The World Is Yours: Preparing For An International Business Career

The world is becoming an increasingly small space, and there isn’t much of it closed off to you if you want to pursue a career in international business. Ultimately, we’re all involved in the global business community these days, so why not take advantage and provide yourself with the skills needed to find success? Here are a few tips on how to do just that – let’s get started right away!


You don’t have to have a university education to start an international business career, but make no mistake about it – it helps. An MBA in international business will signal to employers that you know what you are doing right off the bat. It’s also important to focus on a particular niche. Don’t forget that companies won’t hire you just because know how the global market works – they want to see skills in either marketing, finance, accounting or IT, too. It’s also important to develop your knowledge of global affairs and economics. If you know how the world works in business, it can be invaluable from a strategic point of view.


Another area of importance is the ability to speak a foreign language. English is still very much the language of international business, but if you learn how to speak Spanish, Mandarin, Russian and/or Portuguese, you’ll be able to travel pretty much anywhere on the planet. Many native English speakers are severely hamstrung by their inability to speak another language so it will give you a definite advantage.


Wherever possible, you should be looking for study-abroad opportunities to pick up some experience of foreign countries, not just for your career’s sake, but also for your personal life. Working in a completely different culture to the one you are used to can be difficult, but if you can make it somewhere speaking a different language, you can make it anywhere. Employers will take you more seriously, too, and you will almost always get the nod over a similarly qualified candidate who doesn’t have the same travel experience.


Another essential thing to bear in mind is that every country has different cultures and attitudes, and it’s essential you understand how to recognize these critical differences. For example, the business world of the West is usually fairly straightforward, and conflict is avoided as much as possible. In the East though – in Japan, for instance – they tend to be a lot more involved in even the most straightforward decision-making processes. And even if this sounds like it would be incredibly frustrating, it’s these little cultural differences and ways of thinking that you must get used to.


There are plenty of reasons for embracing a career on the international business stage. You will be worth more to your company, so, will enjoy a higher salary than others in your field who stay at home, for example. But all that travel could have a big impact on your life, particularly if you intend to be mobile and travel from place to place. It’s a huge commitment, so always make sure your international knowledge is backed up with continued learning in your specific niche. Good luck!

student tips

The Number One Thing You Should Do Before Applying For A Job

When you’re looking for a job, you will do plenty of different things. You’ll prepare a resume, you’ll think about what roles you’re interested in, and you’ll practice interview techniques just in case you reach that stage.

However, there is one main thing you must do as well as all these other things; research. Yes, that’s right, you need to conduct research before applying for a job. What does this mean? Well, think about things from the perspective of the people looking to hire new employees. When they receive applications, they’ll research each applicant to see if everything adds up. They’ll go on your social media to ensure there are no negative things there, and they’ll search for your name in Google to make extra sure of it. Essentially, they research you to guarantee they’re not bringing a toxic person into their company with a bad history.

Bearing that in mind, shouldn’t you do the same to them? The last thing you want to do is get a job at a company that’s got a very bad past and a poor reputation. It could end with you having to do unethical things and not being happy in the workplace. This could be avoided if you did your research on the company before you applied for the job.

The question is, how do you go about researching various companies before deciding if it’s worth applying for a job or not? Personally, there are a few main avenues I’d go down, and I’ll list them below:

News Articles

Google makes it so much easier to conduct any form of research as you can type the name of a company in the search bar and be greeted with thousands of results. To make things even better, there’s a tab at the top of the results called ‘news,’ click it, and you’ll see all the news articles containing that company’s name.

What are you looking for here? Basically, any evidence that the company has a good or bad history. Are there articles talking about the company because of their great charity work or for helping out in their local community? Then again, are their articles talking about fraud or any illegal happenings the business has been accused of? Generally speaking, if a big business has done something bad, it will normally make the news. Check various articles to see if there’s good or bad evidence against the company.

One of my top tips is to search for the business with a keyword after their name. For example, search for the name followed by the word ‘fraud’ or ‘tax evasion,’ you know, various negative keywords that may show you some results. This is extremely important if you’re looking for a job in the financial industry. Typically, this is where the most corruption is, as their business revolves around money. As you can see here, rewards are offered for whistleblowers that expose fraudulent financial companies. This should show you how rife and serious the corruption is, otherwise rewards wouldn’t be offered! You need to conduct news article research for any company, but double down your efforts if you’re applying for a job in finance, particularly on Wall Street.

Employee Experiences

Another great way to conduct research is to see what the overall employee experience is. You can do this in two different ways. Firstly, as you can see here, there are sites that offer employee reviews of companies. This is great as they review the company anonymously, so they’re not afraid of telling the truth. It’s a really effective way of seeing what employee life is like and whether or not you want to work there.

Secondly, you can do some extra digging and go on LinkedIn to do some research. Search for the company name, and you should see lots of people that have included that company in their employment info. Here’s where things get a little tricky, you don’t want to ask any current employees as they may get suspicious. Instead, look for people that say they worked for that company in the past, but now have a new job. Ask them their experiences, and see what they say.

Personally, I prefer the first option as it’s easier. However, the second option is good for getting a proper honest answer from someone where they can talk about things in more detail. Either way, finding the employee experience is a great way to see if a business treats their staff well or if they’ve ever had to deal with some dodgy goings on.

Customer Reviews

Next, you need to concern yourself with how customers perceive the business. For me, this is a good way of seeing whether or not a company is trustworthy or not. If they have one-star reviews across the board, they don’t seem like the type of business you want to work for. But, if everyone has nice things to say about them, then you can feel a bit more comfortable applying for a job there.

Perhaps the best places to look for reviews are either on Google itself or Google reviews tend to come up when you search for the company name followed by review, there isn’t a particular site to go to. Some businesses don’t have Google reviews but do have Yellowpages reviews, and vice versa.

The last thing I’ll say is that you must be suspicious if you find no information about the company whatsoever. This is common for many jobs that are offered by call center businesses or door-to-door marketing companies looking to hire people. If you can’t find any info online about a business, not even one review, then that’s dodgy, and I recommend you don’t apply for the job.

Yes, getting your resume in check and doing all that stuff is very important. However, you must research a company before you apply for a job. Then, if you feel happy enough to apply, you need to research again if you get an interview. This time, your aim is to find out about the brand values, etc. so you’re prepared to smash the interview!